There is now one less place to upload your listings for free. Last week the Edgeio, an online listing service, made the decision to cease operations.
The company had raised $5 Million since its inception in 2005, which apparently didn't buy them enough time to tum a profit.
What lessons can be learned from this unfortunate fate? For one thing, while listings are valuable content, it takes a whole lot more than listings to build a profitable and highly-trafficked real estate website.
As a Zillow employee, I often get asked, 'what makes you different than the other real estate websites out there'. Of course there are a number of talking points here. For example, we have all homes online, not just ones for sale. Zestimates are unique content that keep people coming back to the site. We have gotten tremendous press and have greatly benefited consumer word-of-mouth marketing.
But Zillow didn't build its business purely around listings. This isn't considered original content anymore. Zillow built an audience base of over 4,000,000 monthly visitors with very few listings on the site. Of course, today we are allowing Realtors to upload their listings for free and the listing count is rising. We know that people what to see this content and we know Realtors want to get their listings in front of this audience, which can only catapult traffic numbers from here.
But today it takes something more than just listings to build a top ranked website. This is true even from an individual Realtor website. Listings of course are something you want to have on your site. But these days, almost all websites have this functionality. What type of unique, original content can you add to your site to get visitors to your website and keep them coming back again and again?